Exploring Gender & Sexuality in Amsterdam & Morocco August 17, 2020

By (Rhodes College) - abroad from 02/02/2020 to 03/15/2020 with

SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned more about myself, my limits & comfort levels, what my interests are, where I want to spend my time, and who I want to spend it with. It was absolutely worthwhile and I would encourage everyone to go abroad if they can.

Review Photos

SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender Photo SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender Photo SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender Photo SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender Photo SIT Study Abroad: Netherlands - International Perspectives on Sexuality and Gender Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

This study abroad program is a serious one where you dive into the study topic just as much as you dive into your new surroundings. The professors expect you to be fully engaged and have done the work to contribute to class discussions.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My homestay hosts were incredible, I had plenty of space to myself and freedom to roam. They lived in a quiet suburb of Amsterdam and they were close to the super convenient public transit. The only downside is that I was a little far away from my classmates as nobody else lived in the same neighborhood as me.

* Food:

We were always fed, but keep in mind the program is small and the classes don't take place at a large university campus, so there is no cafeteria. That might be good or bad for you, depending on your outlook on food! Meals outside of the program center were either at my homestay (my Iranian & Dutch hosts made amazing home cooked meals on weekdays) or at a local restaurant.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

SIT Netherlands makes sure that every student meets & has access to a mental health professional who understands what it's like to move abroad. This was super helpful for myself & my classmates. There were really no prevalent health issues other than avoiding stray animals/possible rabies on our Moroccan excursion.

* Safety:

It's important for every person going abroad to be fully aware of their surroundings just because you're in a new place you've never seen before and you want to be able to navigate things worry-free. Especially in the Netherlands, bikes are EVERYWHERE and if you don't pay close attention, someone might angrily ring their bell at you for accidentally standing in the bike lane rather than the sidewalk!

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes

This program is great for someone who wants to dive deeper into gender & sexuality studies, or someone who has never had the opportunity to study it at their home institution (like me!). The program takes you to meet people in industries you wouldn't normally explore in an American education setting and the experience of doing constant cross-cultural comparisons is invaluable.

Finances

* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Most meals were provided for which helped a lot with budgeting.

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

Our Dutch instructors were fantastic but almost everyone we met in Amsterdam spoke fluent English so we didn't need to use Dutch often.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Classmates
  • Location
  • Topic of study
* What could be improved?
  • Homestay locations
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? It's very windy in Amsterdam and very hot in Morocco! Pack better gloves & more shorts!

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'